UPDATE: Paramount spokeswoman Brenda Ciccone made this statement in response to reports that Paramount is abandoning the HD-DVD format: “Paramount’s current plan is to continue to support the HD-DVD format.” The statement didn’t specify if Paramount would also produce Blu-ray DVDs in addition to HD-DVDs. It will be interesting to see how this story pans out.

I just gave the bad news to one of the guys in the Toshiba booth at CES. He wasn’t happy. Their HD-DVD focused booth looks a little silly now.

According to the Financial Times, Paramount is going to drop their support for Toshiba’s HD-DVD after Warner Brothers pulled out of the HD-DVD camp last Sunday night. This will most likely put the final nail in the coffin of the HD-DVD format and end the biggest home entertainment format war since Betamax vs. VHS.

Why the sudden switch? Why did Paramount go over to Sony’s Blu-ray so quickly? Insiders are saying that a clause in Paramount’s contract allowed the company to drop HD-DVD in the event that Warner Bros decided to back Blu-ray.

Paramount currently distributes DreamWorks Animation films and many believe that DreamWorks will probably follow Paramount over to the Blu-ray camp.

Blue-ray Members:

* Warner Brothers
* Walt Disney
* 20th Century Fox
* Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
* Paramount (rumor)
* DreamWorks (rumor)
* Sony Pictures
* Sony PlayStation

HD-DVD Members:

* Universal Studios
* The Weinstein Company
* Microsoft Xbox

Paramount would have been a major content producer for HD-DVD. Paramount has several major blockbusters being released this year including the latest installment in the Indiana Jones franchise.

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